San Francisco Art Institute Appoints Rachel Schreiber as Dean and Vice President for Academic Affairs
San Francisco, March 19, 2013—San Francisco Art Institute (SFAI), one of the nation's oldest and most prestigious schools of higher education in contemporary art, today announced the appointment of Rachel Schreiber as the new Dean and Vice President for Academic Affairs. In this role, which she will assume on July 1, 2013, Schreiber will serve as the Institute's chief academic officer, overseeing the faculty, the library, and academic administration. Schreiber will report directly to President Charles Desmarais and serve on the President's Cabinet.
Schreiber joins SFAI from California College of the Arts (CCA), Oakland and San Francisco, where she served as Director of Humanities & Sciences. She has been teaching in the fields of studio arts, critical theory, and the humanities for more than 17 years, serving at institutions including the Maryland Institute College of Art and the Herron School of Art. As an administrator, Schreiber was a graduate department chair at the Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore for eight years and, since 2008, divisional director at CCA.
"I cannot imagine a more perfect fit for the Art Institute," stated SFAI President Charles Desmarais. "Dr. Schreiber brings to the position advanced degrees and extensive experience in both her studio and academic practice—the two pillars of the Institute's world-renowned program in the fine arts. She is well versed in all aspects of academic administration. And on top of all that, she is a warm and charming human being. The entire SFAI community is very much looking forward to having her as our colleague."
A practicing visual artist and publishing historian, Schreiber holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from the Rhode Island School of Design, a Master of Fine Arts degree in Art and Writing from the California Institute of the Arts in Valencia, and MA and PhD degrees in American history from Johns Hopkins University. Her extensive publication and exhibition records include two books, multiple articles, gallery and museum exhibitions, screenings, and invited lectures. Her forthcoming book, titled Modern Print Activism in the United States (Ashgate Publishing, April 2013), is an edited volume that looks at how print culture has been used as a form of social and political activism in twentieth-century U.S. history. Her most recent visual project, Site Reading, was commissioned by the Contemporary Jewish Museum in San Francisco and is currently on display as part of their exhibition "California Dreaming" on the history of Jewish life in the Bay Area. Site Reading, which highlights untold stories of Bay Area Jewish activists, exemplifies Schreiber's interdisciplinary approach in its combination of historical research, photography, and writing.
"I have long admired SFAI for its venerable history of being at the forefront of contemporary art practice and scholarship," stated Schreiber. "Working in higher education allows me to play an important role in shaping culture and society. SFAI is ideally situated to train students who will make significant contributions as artists, scholars, and tomorrow's problem solvers. I am thrilled to be joining the Institute, and to have the opportunity to take on this important leadership role."
An extensive portfolio of Dr. Schreiber's publications, exhibitions, lectures, grants, and awards is available upon request.
Founded in 1871 by artists, writers, and community leaders who possessed a cultural vision for the West, the San Francisco Art Institute has long been a locus for artists and thinkers. Committed to educating artists who will shape the future of art, culture, and society, SFAI fosters creativity and critical thinking in an open, experimental, and interdisciplinary environment. A small school with global impact, SFAI's notable faculty and alumni include Richard Diebenkorn, Ansel Adams, Annie Leibovitz, Enrique Chagoya, Kathryn Bigelow, Peter Pau, Paul Kos, George Kuchar, Catherine Opie, Lance Acord, Barry McGee, and Kehinde Wiley.
SFAI's innovative and interdisciplinary curriculum is informed by a strong tradition of rigorous studio work and research in all the visual arts. Balanced with that tradition is an equally strong emphasis in critical thinking, openness to ideas, support for individual perspective, and the teaching of artistic and cultural traditions beyond the Western model. SFAI offers BFA and BA degrees, MFA and MA degrees, a Post-Baccalaureate Certificate, a dual MFA/MA degree, and a range of continuing education and public programs. SFAI enrolls more than 650 students in the degree program and employs 23 full-time and approximately 120 part-time faculty members.